Review by BimmyandJimmy
"A racing game that has Beetle Bugs in it? Awsome!"
Lets go back in time to summer of 2000. It was a hot evening and my dad and I stopped at a local Blockbuster near our house. So while he was looking for a movie to rent, I was concentrating on the N64 games and seeing which one I could rent. As I continued looking, there was one game at the end of the section that caught my eye. Beetle Adventure racing. At first, I thought that it was just another racer. When I got home, I stuck it in console, and as soon as I started to play, I immediately knew what this game was: awesome.
The visuals in Beetle adventure racing are top notch and maximize the consoles graphic power to the fullest.
To start, the cars look amazing, probably due to all the cool detail and texture that the producers added. For example, when you are driving you car, you will note that the mettle actually reflects a moving image right back at you.
Another cool feature is that you can change the color to your car. Further on in the game, you get many different looking parts added to the unlocked cars, like spoilers, different wheel brims, and so much more.
As for the 3-D environment, they also look magnificent and really do feel like you're on an adventure. For one thing, the levels are big and hold many hidden secrets. Better yet are the places you race in. During your adventure, you race thru the hilly countryside of England, to the snowy mountains of Canada. There are other levels in the game as you advance, but its best if you find them out yourself.
One of the cooler things about the levels is the lighting. When your driving in the daytime, its sunny and the cars glimmer their color back to the player. When you're in the snow, the car has dull colors to create the effect that you're driving in fog, and when you drive at night, or in a tunnel, your car becomes darker and your car light's turn on for that added, freash detail.
The audio in BAR might not be classic, but its still one of the best parts about the overal presentation of this game.
The sound in this game is great, and it really makes you feel like you're actually in the level. First off, the car sounds pretty good and original. All throughout the game, you can hear the engine constantly running as you drive down the road, followed by your car sliding and skidding on the concrete pavement as they speed around the corner, and, for added detail, each car has its own horn when you press the right c button. Don't forget about when you crash your car against something. To sum it up, it sounds painful!
As for the background sound, they are also really good. During some parts of each level, you can hear a crane lifting up a pile of wood, a crowd cheering you or booing you when you make or break a big jump, and the sound of hot lava bubbling up around you. That's just a sample of background sounds that you will hear, because there are a lot more.
As for the music, its not that great, but it does set the atmosphere of the levels just right. Most of the time, you will hear a bass guitar playing while a rock groove is playing on a drum set. Other levels have different music to them thankfully, so you don't have to hear the same song over again.
As you know, this is a driving game because it says to in the title. I will be honest with you, I don't like driving games that much, but there's something to Beetle Adventure racing that makes feel like playing over and over again.
For one, in this game, you dont drive crazy pimped out cars with Nitro. Instead, you drive Beetle bugs. At first thought, it might sound funny and crazy, but after you play this game, you will dig the vehicles and realize how cool they really are.
One thing that I like about this game is the length of the tracks. Normally when you play a racer, the tracks are about two to three minutes long. In Beetle Adventure Racing, the tracks are about six to seven minutes long. I like this because if your in second place, you still have lots of time to get into first, and when you do get in first, maintain that spot can be challenging because the computers are mean drivers in this game, and holding on to that spot for a long time really gets you exited to win.
After a while, you might get bored of racing, and if so, well there is good news, because you can play a number of really fun multiplayer game's, and let me tell you, the multiplayer in this game is awesome, and what's best is that you can play with three other people. In multi player mode, you can do your standard race or career mode and race for bragging rights. This is cool and all, but the best thing about the multi player is the beetle battle. The goal here is to get all the colored beetles before your friends do. Sure it sound easy, but it isn't, because there are many different types of items you can use on your friends to take their beetles away. It's awesome.
Unfortunately there are flaws to the game. One problem is that it's hard to steer your car sometimes and crashes are almost frequent. For example, when you hit a sharp corner, be prepared to hit the guardrails on the side.
Another problem is while the computer might be challenging, they are also quite cheap. What I mean is that somehow, your opponents move faster than you, and end up placing first all the time. This might not seem like a problem at first, but play the game longer, it just happens all the time. It's frustrating. Worst is when you crash, because there is no way that you will ever see 1st place again.
GET IT OR PASS IT: I would strongly requirement renting this game first and then buy it if you like it, because you never know. If you are a hardcore driving fan, you must get this game, no matter what.
CONCLUSION: Beetle Adventure racing is such a fine game. I bet that most people who are fans on this genre have played it and might tell you to check it out. If you ever see this game, give it a try. I bet you'll like it.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/15/08, Updated 11/30/09
Game Release: Beetle Adventure Racing (US, 02/28/99)
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